The DJI Mavic Mini is for drone hobbyists looking to level up their aerial videography without spending a lot of money on an expensive camera drone.
The newly released Mavic Mini is the smallest and most affordable DJI drone yet. It packs impressive picture and video quality and a host of flying features into an incredibly small and lightweight design.
The onboard camera can shoot 2.7K Quad HD videos and 12MP photos with a 3-axis gimbal ensuring smooth shots.
The Mavic Mini is the first high-quality consumer drone that is designed for anyone who wants to fly a drone.
Not only is it easy to get started taking aerial videos using the DJI FLY App, but you can also actually fly it as soon as you unbox it. There’s no need to register the drone with the FAA since it weighs 249g, a gram shy of the 250g minimum limit required for registration.
Read on for our full review of the DJI Mavic Mini, its best features, what it lacks, and how it compares to other DJI drones.
If you prefer a 4K camera drone, see our reviews of the best consumer drones for sale. We have some great recommendations.
The DJI Mavic Mini comes at just the right time when countries around the world have been enacting laws to regulate drone flying.
In the US, UK, Canada, and Australia, owners of drones heavier than 250g have to register it. In the US, drone owners also have to label their drones with the registration number.
The DJI Mavic Mini is designed to relieve casual drone users the hassle of registering and labeling a drone.
The Mavic Mini’s takeoff weight – including the drone, battery, and SD card – is 249g. That’s one less than the 250g limit set by several countries.
This makes the Mavic Mini a truly mass-market drone that anyone can fly. Just unbox it, charge it and fly it.
Despite its small and lightweight design, the Mavic Mini is packed full of features. It’s not quite at the level of a full-size DJI Mavic in terms of features, but it is good enough to make it the best sub-250g drone in the market.
Surprisingly, it offers roughly the same flight time as large drones – about 30 minutes. This is probably down to its much lighter design.
The video quality is not 4K like DJI’s larger drones, but at 2.7K, it’s good enough for casual aerial videographers.
The images are also of good quality.
The DJI Fly app makes it easy even for beginners to take high-quality shots. Quickshot modes allow you to take cinematic videos without having to control the drone’s direction.
Price-wise, the Mavic Mini is a great choice for hobbyists looking for an affordable beginner drone. There are two packages available: the Mavic Mini at $399 and the Mavic Mini Fly More Combo at $499.
The Fly More option comes with three batteries (for a total flight time of 90 minutes), spare propellers, an extra micro USB cable, a propeller guard, a two-way charging hub, an 18W USB charger, and a carrying bag.
For most aspiring Mavic Mini owners, we recommend the Fly More Combo package. It’s only $100 but offers really good value for your money.
If you were to buy the extra accessories separately, you’d spend more than $100.
Who is it for?
Those who’ll find the DJI Mavic Mini most useful are casual aerial photographers and videographers.
Professionals and serious hobbyists should consider the DJI Mavic 2, which offers a much more advanced camera, 4K video, and obstacle avoidance, among other features not present in the Mini.
The Mavic Mini is also great for individuals, families, and friends who want to capture special moments from the air.
The Mavic Mini is, essentially, an anybody-can-fly-it drone, and that’s the best thing about it.
Ultra-Compact and Foldable
The Mavic Mini is the smallest drone DJI has made so far. The ultra-compact design is as important as the other features.
That’s because DJI wanted the Mavic Mini to come in at under 250g to avoid the registration requirement in many countries, including the US and Canada.
They achieved it, barely. The Mavic Mini weighs 249g.
Another advantage of the compact design is portability. It also helps that the Mini, like most other DJI drones, is foldable.
When folded, the Mavic Mini measures 5.5” long and 8” wide, small enough to fit in a small backpack or a large pocket.
The camera has a 1/2.3” CMOS sensor. The lens has anf/2.8 aperture and an 83-degree field of view.
Professional videographers will feel the absence of a 4K video. But for casual users – e.g., families on a picnic or friends out on a bike ride –2.7K is great.
Videos look great on the phone, on a TV, and social media.
Note that the frame rate at 2.7K is 30fps, which may result in the slightly less smooth video when shooting fast-moving scenes.
But if you are willing to downgrade video quality to 1080p, you can shoot at 60fps.
To help users take cinematic videos, the DJI FLY app offers four Quickshots modes: Dronie, Rocket, Circle, and Helix.
Each mode provides a different perspective of the subject by tweaking the direction and pattern of flying.
As for photos, you can manually control ISO and shutter speed. For ISO, the range is 100-3200. For shutter speed, you can choose between 4 seconds and1/8000 seconds.
This makes the Mavic Mini camera great for shooting in different conditions, including low light environments.
The default photography mode is a single shot. But you can switch to interval mode and set the interval to between 2 seconds and 60 seconds.
While the DJI Mavic Mini is designed to be beginner-friendly, the absence of obstacle-detecting sensors means you have to be extra careful when flying it around trees and near buildings.
Even when you’ve selected an automaticQuickshot mode, the drone can still slam into a building or get snagged by a tree. This is unlike the DJI Mavic 2, which can avoid obstacles while still maintaining a specific flying pattern.
We recommend staying away from obstructions and flying in good light to maintain a line of sight to the drone.
The 2400mAh battery offers 30 minutes of flight time, on paper.
In real-world conditions, you are likely to get between 20 and 25 minutes, depending on the weather. Note that sport mode will reduce flight time by a few minutes.
You can adjust the speed of drone by switching to either Sport mode or CineSmooth Mode.
Sport mode is the fastest, but it shaves off a few minutes from flight time. CineSmooth mode slows the drone down, allowing you to take more precise and stable shots. It’s also handy when you are flying through tight areas.
Controller and Video Transmission
Unlike the older sibling, the Mavic 2, DJI Mavic Mini’s controller doesn’t have a screen.
You can use it on its own to navigate the drone, but to get a live feed, select shooting modes, and see stats from the drone, you’ll need to attach your smartphone.
You’ll also need to download the DJI FLY app, which is the main control hub for the Mavic Mini.
The app has useful tutorials and in-app tips to help beginners get started. It also shows flight status, such as altitude, distance, and battery level.
It also contains camera settings and a beginner-friendly editing suite that lets you shoot, edit, and share media without leaving the app.
The app also provides a live feed from the drone limited to 720p video at 30fps. The max video transmission range is 2.5 miles. Again, that’s just on paper. In real life, the range will be less because of obstructions. So be careful how far you let the drone fly.
Note: Connection cables are provided for all port types: Micro USB, USB-C, and Lightning. You can attach just about any smartphone to the controller.
The Fly More Mavic Mini already comes with several extra accessories, including a carrying bag and a two-way charging hub. Here are some other accessories you can order for your Mavic Mini.
Mavic Mini DIY Creative Kit: Personalize your Mavic Mini with this pack of stickers and markers. But note that even a couple of stickers will add to the drone’s weight, potentially getting it to the 250g mark. You may find yourself illegally flying your colorfully customized drone.
Charging base: The charging base includes a charging platform and a glass dome that covers your drone while it charges. It doubles up as a charging base and a display case.
Snap adapter: Useful for attaching additional accessories. DJI says any extra accessory must be less than 30 grams. That’s still more than enough to get the drone past the 250g limit.
Return to Home: A default safety feature for all DJI drones. When set, RTH tells the drone where to return in case of low battery or loss of transmission. Make sure you set the right RTH altitude to avoid crashing into obstacles. It should be higher than the highest object or structure around the area.
Charging: Unfortunately, there’s no USB-C charging. The Mavic Mini charges via a Micro USB port.
Dimensions: 140×82×57 mm folded and 160×202×55 mm unfolded
Max speed: 13 m/s (sport mode), 8 m/s (normal mode)
2.7K video quality and 12MP still images
3-axis mechanical gimbal
Max flight time: 30 minutes
4km transmission range
What We Like
- An affordable that anyone can fly.
- Ultra-compact and lightweight makes it highly portable and saves you the hassle of registering with the FAA.
- Good video and picture quality.
- Multiple shooting modes make it easy to produce high-quality videos.
- Long flight time.
- Smartphone app is easy to use.